Sometimes users experience issues with Chrome. If you are experiencing messages about the firewall or your antivirus software blocking applications you may need to change some settings to clear this problem. In this article, we cover how to allow Chrome to access the network in your firewall or antivirus settings.
What causes Chrome to be blocked?
A variety of software programs can interfere with Chrome’s operation.
Windows Firewall is the stock security-application included with Windows 10. Windows Firewall is intended to protect your computer by blocking any suspicious programs or harmful activity. You can adjust Windows Firewall’s settings to suit your security needs, but sometimes settings can be configured to incorrectly block harmless programs.
Windows Defender is the anti-malware software included with Windows 10, intended to block any malicious software and spyware. Windows Defender is a complete antivirus software that provides a robust free option, compared to other paid options. Windows Defender can also interfere with the regular operation of programs like Chrome.
Other antivirus programs that can cause the same problems include Avast, Malwarebytes, Bitdefender, McAfee, Kaspersky. Below is a set of instructions for solving connection issues with Google Chrome and the programs listed above.
Add Exception for Chrome to Windows Firewall
You’ve opened Chrome but instead of your homepage you see ‘No internet’ and Chrome’s tiny dinosaur game. First you should check that Windows Firewall hasn’t started blocking the Chrome application from communicating with the internet. If so you need to add it to the exceptions list.
1. Click the Start icon and search Control Panel. Select the Control Panel application from the search options.
- Click on System and Security.
- Select Windows Defender Firewall.
- Next, look to the left-hand side of this new window. Select Allow an app or feature through Windows Defender Firewall.
- Click the Change Settings button and if a popup appears about confirming changes to the computer, select Yes.
- Click Allow another app.
- In the Add an app window select Browse.
- Enter C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application
- Select chrome.exe and click Open.
- Click Add and select both the Private and Public boxes.
- Make sure to select OK. Now you can restart Google Chrome to see if the browser can connect to the internet.
Add Exclusion for Chrome to Windows Defender
You may need to add an exclusion to Windows Defender to restore access to Google Chrome. Follow the steps below:
- Click the Start icon and search Windows Security. Select the Windows Security application from the list.
- Under Security at a glance and select Virus & threat protection.
- Now select Virus & threat protection settings and if a popup appears about confirming changes to the computer, select Yes.
- Click Manage settings and scroll down until you see Exclusions listed.
- Below that click on Add or remove exclusions.
- Click the Add an exclusion button and select Folder.
- You want to input C:\Program Files (x86)\Google and then select the Chrome folder and click Select folder.
- Restart Chrome and to check and see if any webpages or features are being blocked.
Add Chrome to Avast Antivirus Exceptions List
Avast is a popular antivirus software available on Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. There is a free version available, but also a paid option that has extra security features. Avast Antivirus should not block the entire browser like Windows Firewall and Windows Defender. Instead, it will block specific websites that are seen as threats. If you are sure the website you are trying to visit is safe, but you are being blocked from accessing it, you can exclude that specific website.
- Start Avast Antivirus by selecting from the hidden taskbar menu or searching from the Start button. Select the Menu button and then on the right-hand side select Settings.
- Now select General and click Exceptions on the list to the right.
- Under Exceptions, click ADD EXCEPTION.
- Type the exact URL of the website that you are blocked from accessing, in the URLs to exclude field.
- Click on Add to add it to the exclusions list and then click Ok.
- You can now reopen Chrome and try to access the website that you added to the exclusions list.
Add Chrome to Malwarebytes Allow List
Malwarebytes is another extremely popular security program designed to be lightweight, unobtrusive, but powerful at preventing all types of malware. Unfortunately Malwarebytes can sometimes start blocking access to web pages on Chrome. Google Chrome can be added to Malwarebytes’ Allow List to fix this problem.
- Open Malwarebytes from either a desktop icon, using Start button search function, or from the system tray.
- Find the Gear symbol, for Settings and click it. Find the Allow List tab and click the Add button to open the Add an Item to your Allow list window.
- Select Allow a file or folder.
- You want to find the Chrome folder, so you can add it to the Allow List. When you have navigated to the correct folder, select it.
- Restart Chrome and try to access any blocked web pages.
Add Blocked Websites on Chrome to Bitdefender’s Exceptions List
Bitdefender is an antivirus software with company headquarters in Romania. Bitdefender’s biggest user base is located in the US, but Bitdefender is 8th worldwide for antivirus software. Sometimes Bitdefender may inadvertently mark safe and legitimate websites as dangerous, causing them to be blocked. You will need to add an exception for websites that are being blocked, but be sure the domain name is correct and the website is 100% safe first.
- Open Bitdefender from either a desktop icon, using Start button search function, or from the system tray.
- Click the Protection button on the left-hand side.
- Find ONLINE THREAT PREVENTION and below that click Settings.
- Now find and click Manage exceptions and then click + Add an Exception.
- Enter the full website URL or IP address and double-check that it’s correct.
- Switch Online Threat Prevention on.
- Save changes and check Chrome to see if you can access the previously blocked websites.
Give Chrome Full Access in McAfee Security
McAfee is a security software company founded in 1987. McAfee joined Intel’s security division in 2011. McAfee offers a handful of products including commercial and enterprise options. McAfee is aware that their security programs sometimes block Google Chrome from working correctly. You can fix this by once again, adding Google Chrome as an exception to McAfee’s firewall.
- Open McAfee Security from either a desktop icon, using Start button search function, or from the system tray.
- Look in the top right-hand corner for the Navigation link and click it.
- Find the Firewall section and then the Internet Connections for Programs tab.
- Search through the program list for Google Chrome and select Edit.
- Make sure Allow Full Access is selected for Google Chrome.
Kaspersky Lab Antivirus Encrypted Settings
Kaspersky Lab is a cybersecurity company headquartered in Russia. Kaspersky’s software is popular in Europe and has over 400 million users worldwide. Kaspersky Lab invests in cybersecurity research to identify new and emerging threats. If Kaspersky Antivirus is blocking Chrome, you need to check that encrypted websites are being loaded.
- Open Kaspersky Antivirus from either a desktop icon, using Start button search function, or from the system tray.
- Select the Gear icon in the bottom left to access Settings.
- On the left-hand side find and click Additional.
- Now click Network.
- Scroll down until you see, Encrypted connections scanning.
- Make sure “Do not scan encrypted settings” is selected.
- Exit Kaspersky. Open Chrome and attempt to access websites as before.
Chrome Access Restored
If these solutions didn’t work, the problem is likely not directly related to your Firewall or Antivirus program. Instead, Chrome may need to be updated or reinstalled. Disabling any Chrome extensions can help too. Hopefully if your antivirus program is listed above, you were able to follow along and restore Google Chrome’s access to the internet.